Clubbing a seal isn’t an option.
Over the weekend, the Reds dropped 2 of 3 to the Kansas City Royals. That’s right, they lost a series to the Royal. It’s not exactly the pounding of crappy teams we’ve grown accustomed to so far in this 2010 campaign.
In both losses, much of the blame can be pointed directly at the struggling bullpen. The bullpen did okay in the first game, allowing only 1 run over 4 innings, but that 1 run broke the tie in extra innings. In the rubber-match of the series, Sam LeCure again kept the Reds in the game, until the bullpen entered and every reliever allowed a run.
What was a strength of the team last year has not been this year. The only Nasty Boy is Arthur Rhodes, and at 40, no one would mistake him for a boy.
Help is needed. Fast. The St. Louis Cardinals have struggled, but seem to be finding their winning ways again. This is no time to keep running the same relievers out there. Unfortunately, as John Fay writes, there isn’t much help in the minors. Bill Bray and Jared Burton continue rehabbing in the low minors, and despite some promising signs, aren’t ready yet.
That leaves the option of a trade or moving a starter to relief. With the plethora of good young starters available, the latter seems like a no-brainer to try first. Sam LeCure, at the very least, should be given a relief opportunity once Homer Bailey comes back.
Fay talked to Walt Jocketty, who confirmed that Travis Wood and Matt Maloney will be looked at as options for the bullpen. Don’t wait too long, Walt. As Reds fans have seen in years past, a bad bullpen can destroy the soul of a team. And I don’t want to get off this ride yet.